"On the continent, people have good food;
In England people have good table manners."
( George Mikes. How to be an Alien)
Actually in England, if our household is anything to go by, good table manners are hard to come by. One byproduct of the great big vegetable challenge is that we all eat together as a family far more often. You'd think this would stimulate interesting conversation. It does - but it also means we have to watch each other eat.
"So what did you do at school today? Can you please use a knife and fork."
"I thought we could go and see a film. Would you please not lick the plate clean."
"You do it."
"No I don't."
"I saw you."
Its a truce. It is disgusting to lick a plate clean at the table. But I console myself that at least it means someone is enjoying the food. A year ago, I hated seeing the plate full of food at the end of a meal. We've come a long way with plate licking...
Geek and Nerd did warn me that in her household, rocket pizzas are "inhaled" rather than eaten. Joanna told us about a pizza bianca, a white pizza base with parmesan with a drizzle of olive oil and rocket, capers, raisins and a little anchovy scattered on top. These were inhaled.